Thursday 2 January 2020

C.O. Jellema: 'Het waait er altijd'


On such a terp, we said, right close
to such an ancient little church,
we too perhaps – and pointed out
the symbols to each other: butterfly.
hourglass, as a ring round names
the serpent biting its own tail.
It was a day in spring, flowers
already dotting the grass,
the reassuring droning of a tractor
from the field, there was
much wind.

Lightly those things are said as long
as you can speak, can look at me so doing
with that familiar face of yours, but

now that I write it down, search for a word
not made flesh, that did not dwell among us,

for when all that’s left
to me is to think of your voice,
to imagine your face:

what is it calls itself lasting,
what omits itself anywhere;

for when that whole
idea of idyll
goes underground,
what then,
on such a terp, in
it bloweth where it listeth
and thou hearest the sound thereof
but canst not tell whence it cometh
that eternal

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